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We must add, that there are many articles of far inferior worth, compared with thofe above cited; for the volume is loaded with many a heavy ftale ftory, copied from well-known hiftories and monthly chronicles. Thus we have the long narrative of Gowry's confpiracy against James VI. of Scotland, without the author betraying the leaft confciousness that the truth of it had ever been queftioned, and another turn given to the adventure. The long ftory of Elizabeth Canning is also retailed to as little purpose. In fhort, he fometimes felects and copies, without judgment, or evident intention :-yet, whatever may be the defects of this publication, it would be injuftice to its author, as well as to our readers, fhould we conceal from them this truth-that the perufal of many of the anecdotes, characters, and sketches, with which the volume abounds, has yielded us confiderable amusement, and fome information.

ART. VIII. A New Medical Dictionary, or General Repofitory of Phyfic; containing an Explanation of the Terms, and a Defcription of the various Particulars relating to Anatomy, Phyfiology, Phyfic, Surgery, Materia Medica, Chemistry, &c. &c. &c.; each Article, according to its Importance, being confidered in every Relation to which its Ufefulness extends in the Healing Art. By G. Motherby, M. D. C. M. S. The Third Edition, revifed and corrected, with confiderable Additions, by George Wallis, M. D. S. M. S. Lecturer on the Theory and Practice of Phyfic, London. Folio. pp. 738. Plates 30. 21. 10s. bound. Johnfon, Robinfons, &c. 1791.

WE E have already spoken our fentiments concerning the two former editions of Dr. Motherby's dictionary: of course, we shall at prefent confine ourselves to the additions made by Dr. Wallis.

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The prefent editor laments that ill-health fhould have taken the fuperintendance of this book from the hands of his predeceffor; and he observes, with great modefty, that he stands in a delicate predicament, attempting to correct and improve the work of a living author, and that author his friend :-he adds,

To obliterate, therefore, any of his fixed principles, upon which he has founded a number of his theories and reafoning, though perhaps not totally according with my own modes of thinking, might be thought repaying friendship with cruelty, and facrificing confidence to vanity;-I have therefore let fuch doctrines as he has adopted ftand unaltered; only, here and there, endeavouring, where it appeared neceffary, to elucidate and place them in a clearer point of view; and purfued fuch plans throughout the whole, as

* See Review, vol, Iviii. p. 318. and vol. lxxv. p. 76. REV. AUG. 1792. Ff

might

might co-operate with his wishes, centered in rendering himself not an unprofitable member to the community.'

Reafoning justly, that the plan of a dictionary should be confined to points of practical knowlege, rather than extended to queftions of controversy and speculation, Dr. W. has fought more earneftly to render his reader a good practitioner, than an able difputant. For fimilar reafons, he has rejected fuch parts of the former editions, as were not closely connected with medical utility, fubftituting other remarks more intimately united with the fubject. Hence he has refcinded many things, which belonged rather to arts, manufactories, and commerce, than to medicine; as well as the biographical part, which, while it was too concife and vague to be of any service, occupied space which was wanting for matters of more importance.-Much information has been added respecting the powers and virtues of medicines, and many authors have been confulted on this head the nature and compofition of the several medicinal waters have received particular attention; the doses are afcertained; and the mode of adminiftering them is fpecified, as likewife is the season of the year when they are most efficacious.— With regard to difeafes, we meet with many valuable additions; and the principal authors, who have written on the feveral complaints, are enumerated: nor has the editor confined himself entirely to the authorities of others, but has occafionally presented us with opinions and reasoning of his own.

A very neceffary part of this performance, and one attended with great convenience, is an index; in which every article may be found, by whatever appellation it is diftinguished-On the whole, though we cannot fay that there are no defects, ftill, with refpect to the general intent of the work, they appear of too little confequence to particularize; and we have no fear in pronouncing this publication well worthy of the attention of that clafs of medical practitioners for whose use it is principally defigned.

To this edition are added four plates of the gravid uterus: thefe, and the improved ftate of the others, fhew that the proprietors have not been fparing of expence.

ART. IX. The Hiftory of Political Transactions, and of Parties, from the Restoration of King Charles the Second, to the Death of King William. By Thomas Somerville, D. D. 4to. PP. 595. 11. is. Boards. Cadell. 1792.

HISTORY is certainly the beft fchool of inftruction, both to those who govern and to those who are governed; teaching by the only fure teft, experience, the value of the feveral po

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litical

litical theories on which governments have hitherto been formed; and thus conducting mankind, by flow but fecure advance toward the fummit of political wifdom. The British History, in particular, is eminently ufeful to our politicians; for this obvious reason, that the prefent political ftate of Great Britain owes its existence to events which British hiftory records: but in order to render this study advantageous in its full extent, it is neceffary that political facts fhould be accurately ftated; and it is defirable that they fhould be directed with their full force toward the point of political inftruction, by being detached from other fubjects.

In both these refpects, the important publication, which is now to pass under our notice, has peculiar merit. Dr. Somerville, by making it his firft object to exhibit the political principles and fpirit of the period concerning which he writes, and only introducing coincident events for the purpose of explaining and illuftrating political affairs, has written what may ftrictly be called a Political Hiftory; and he appears to have very induftriously compared the various fources of authentic information, in order to remove the ambiguities, and to obviate the difficulties, with which the ftruggles of contending parties have hitherto encumbered this portion of the English History.

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One material part of this writer's defign is, to examine the evidence that arifes from the original papers which some late hiftorians have collected and publifhed. Though he acknowleges that these papers, in many inftances, give authority to opinions formerly controverted, and correct and enlarge the information of the impartial and induftrious inquirer, yet he thinks great caution neceffary in admitting conclufions drawn by these writers from the facts which they themselves have difcovered, on account of the ftrong temptation which neceffarily induces them to over-rate their difcoveries. He is particularly defirous of rescuing from undeferved obloquy fome of those great names which were fo highly revered by our ancestors as fufferers in the cause of liberty, or as inftruments of delivering the nation from flavery; and he therefore combats the opinions of Mr. Macpherson, with respect to many important transactions and characters which occur in this history.

The work opens with a concife view of the leading facts, which mark the political spirit and character of the times at the reftoration of Charles II. Zeal for loyalty, our author obferves, was the principle which then predominated; and the prince, the ministry, and the parliament, were united in the fame views of policy :-but during this ferene ftate of politics, the feeds of oppofition were fecretly fown; till at length, on Ff2 the

the fall of Clarendon, an epoch commenced which was crowded with buftle and intrigue, and which exhibited faction in its moft diverfified forms. The causes of the mutual diffatisfaction which now arose between Charles and his parliament, and of the sudden transition from war to peace and even friendly alliance with Holland ;-the manner in which the king endeavoured to execute his crooked fyftem of policy, by means of the fecret council called the cabal ;-and the wife and temperate oppofition, which was made, by the commons, to the arbitrary meafures of adminiftration;-are clearly ftated. The introduction of the test-act, which remains to the prefent time an infuperable wall of feparation between fellow-citizens, who are equally bound to perform the duties, and entitled to fhare the honours, of citizenship, is thus related, with reflections on the conduct of the Diffenters of that period, which well deferve attention:

Both houfes now turned their attention to ftrengthen the barriers of the conftitution in that quarter into which the king had repeatedly attempted to push the ufurpations of prerogative. A joint addrefs was prefented by both houfes of parliament, reprefenting the dangers arifing from popifh recufants, and praying the king to command priests and jefuits to depart from the kingdom, and to difband all officers and foldiers who refufed to take the oaths. This address alfo met with a favourable answer from the king.

A more impregnable and lasting fence for the protection of the church of England the zeal of this parliament raifed, by obtaining the royal affent to the teft act, which excluded from any office or place of truft or profit, all who did not renounce the doctrine of tranfubftantiation, and receive the facrament of the Lord's Supper, according to the form of the church of England. It is a curious and memorable circumstance, that an act, which fhut the door of preferment against the proteftant diffenters, and doomed them to the fame political incapacity with Roman catholics, not only paffed without any oppofition from the former; but, that it was promoted by the most refpectable leaders of their party.

This conceffion of the proteftant diffenters has been often applauded by their friends, as a fingular example of prudence and ge nerofity; because they facrificed their rights and refentments, to the dread of impending popery, and the fecurity of the reformed religion. Their conduct upon this occafion, whether examined by the rules of probity, or the dictates of enlightened charity, will be found deferving of explicit and marked expreffions of condemnation. Profeffing to guard against popery, did not the diffenters act under the influence of its work principles? Did they not abandon their rights, as men and as chriftians? rights, the renunciation of which, for a single day, no fear of danger, nor profpect of future peace, can justify, at the tribunal of confcience.

The event of providence has inftructed us, by this, and every f. milar experiment, to reprobate the imprudence, as well as the immo

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rality of that maxim, That it is lawful to do evil, when good may be obtained by it. A bill brought in for the relief of the proteftant diffenters, as the re ard of their confent to the teft act, was defeated by the disagreement of the two houses, and the adjournment of parliament. And thus, the temporizing fpirit of the diffenters has tranfmitted bondage to their pofterity, which the liberality of the age in which we live, never could have impofed; but from which even that liberality is not adequate to emancipate them, while it is counteracted by religious bigotry, and the timid policy of those who difpense the favours of government.'

Other tranfactions of this reign are concisely related with a continual attention to the hiftorian's leading defign; from which we fhall felect, as particularly applicable to the present times, the author's account of the attempt which was made, in 1679, to correct abuses in public expenditure, to retrench the influence of the court on the parliament, and to extend the liberty of the fubject:

While the commons were vehemently engaged in forwarding the bill of exclufion, they contrived with dexterous policy, to introduce fuch inquiries as furnished new arguments for that measure; and which at the fame time obliquely reflected upon the character of the duke of York. They appointed a committee to inquire into the miscarriages of the navy, the management of which nad principally devolved upon him, and in which he had hitherto been fuppofed to poffefs diftinguished merit. A ftrict examination into the expenditure and the abuses of the revenue was carried on, with a view of expofing the corrupt practices of the king and his minifters during the late parliament; and to render infamous thofe members who had yielded to their influence. Charles Bertrey, who had received a commiffion for diftributing the fum of two hundred and fifty thousand four hundred and fixty-feven pounds, for the fecret fervice of government, was, by the order of the house, committed to the custody of the ferjeant at arms, because he refused to state to them the particular articles in which that fum had been expended. Sir Stephen Fox, who had been employed by the court in the fame office, was ordered to produce every account of money paid to members, or to other perfons, for the purpose of keeping public tables, and performing any fecret fervice for the court. From Sir Stephen Fox's evidence it appeared, that the fum of three thousand four hundred pounds had been paid, annually, in penfions to members of parliament; a fum which fell short of the expectation of the authors of this investigation. There is reafon however to fufpect, that this fum was but an inconfiderable proportion of the money diftributed for the purpose of corrupting members. For it is remarkable, that fome names were added, upon the knowledge of private members, to the lift of penfioners delivered by Sir Stephen Fox, who spoke merely from memory, and the books of account never were produced, nor could afterwards be found. It must also be observed, that this inquiry was confined to the abuse of the revenue; and it may be conjectured, that a great part of the money

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